The Washington Post recently featured Dr. Adam Grant’s research highlighting the link between extroversion, introversion, and job performance. Written by Dan Pink, New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, the article states that most managers believe that extroverts—those people who are more friendly, gregarious, and assertive in social situations—are better salespeople than introverts.
However, this widely held belief is not backed up by scientific evidence. Pink points out, “The conventional view that extroverts make the finest salespeople is so accepted that we’ve overlooked one teensy flaw: There’s almost no evidence it’s actually true.” In a meta-analytic study of 35 studies and thousands of salespeople, researchers find almost a zero correlation between extroversion and higher performance.
In a surprising study, Dr. Adam Grant finds that ambiverts—those “people who are neither extremely introverted nor extremely extroverted”–turn out to be the best salespeople. Dr. Grant found that ambiverts’ sales were 24% higher than extroverts.
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